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Operation Safety Net: Day 5

One of my brothers had to go home, leaving one brother behind to carry on with the plan. He traveled over to the to the retirement community in the morning for a game of racquetball with our Dad. Even though he called ahead telling my mom he was en route to get dad for racquetball, when he arrives dad was sitting on the sofa reading in his street clothes. It seems little, if anything, sticks anymore.

In the interim, my brother had been delivering both the mail and newspapers each morning. Our mother has asked not to have the mail forwarded from their townhouse, and to let the papers continue to come to their old address as she plans to travel back and forth to get mail, papers, spend the night, etc.

My brother found out my father has been going to the library/reading room at the retirement community in the mornings to read the paper(s), and he quite enjoys it. When asked if he would like the paper delivered to his apartment door, he said don’t need to. Perhaps he enjoys slipping out to get some alone time.

Because my parents don’t have short-term memory, it’s been hard to really tell what their routine has been. When we ask, we never know what is fact or fiction.

Now it’s very hard to spend time with my mother because she has gotten so agitated. She went to her weekly bridge game and when my brother and dad arrived to check in, my mom in front of the entire room, told my father to get the hell out of the room. She seemed very upset. It was very out of character for her to have such a public outburst.

The four hours my brother and father had together was nice, but he noticed my father had no memory at all and had to stay close to him, so my father would not wonder off. My dad has a very good memory still for military details and facts, but not much else. During their time together, my father never mentioned their townhouse or wanting to travel back to it which is so different than our mother’s constant remarks and complaints. That seems very much in character.

My brothers cleaned out the townhouse of their favored items and moved them to the retirement community. We want to make it a place they no longer find of interest.

It’s hard for us to tell what my dad really thinks in all of this. Does he agree with what my mom says or is he too tired to be able to comprehend or clash against her illogical whims and rants? We have two different personalities, two different dementias, but an unrelenting loyalty to stay together. Could this get any more complicated?  We are sure it will. Readied.

4 comments on “Operation Safety Net: Day 5

  1. Good luck with all this. I follow your daily notes with interest. It is similar to my parents situation. Mom was angry and upset and didn’t want to move but the doctor said it was necessary. Dad was happy wherever they were but wanted mom to be happy. After a month things began to settle down and within 3 months mom had settled into a routine with activities like bingo and no longer asked to go “home”. It takes awhile and it is hard on the family in the meantime.

  2. Ay-yi-yii. Three months! Thanks for the note. I am a little worried to return home, but happy that we made the effort to assist them as best we could.

  3. It sounds like your Dad is adapting and your Mom is still fighting for her independence at all costs. Play to your strengths, your Dad. My aunt with dementia, now in a nursing home, kept asking about her house. She said someone moved it, people had moved into it, that we sold it, that we took all her things, that she wanted to go home. We weren’t going to let her go home, but one day I decided to drive her past her house just so she could see it was still there. She looked over at it as we drove past and showed no interest, didn’t even ask me to stop the car. She continues to say people are living there, we sold it, etc. Can’t win so don’t try.

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